The mission of the Department of Liturgics and Translations is twofold: both to provide parishes with approved liturgical texts, and to provide education and guidance as to the best and most appropriate practice of liturgics. Because liturgical rubrics and liturgical music share so many overlapping areas of concern, this department also works closely with the Department of Sacred Music.
As the only source for archdiocesan-approved liturgical texts, the staff of this department is continually hard at work translating, re-working, and publishing service books that will help parishes navigate various kinds of liturgical situations and occasions. For example, knowing that our archdiocese now has more bishops than ever before, and that our parishes enjoy hosting them and praying with them, the department recently developed a book to help priests serve alongside their bishops smoothly and properly. As the department goes forward, it hopes to continue meeting the evolving needs of our unique Antiochian-American liturgical tradition while simultaneously safeguarding the tradition as it has been handed down to us.
An online liturgical guide is provided for each Sunday on this webpage; it includes variations in the order of service and the variable texts for the day. As this department exists to serve the immediate needs of parish liturgical life, it welcomes comments, suggestions, and questions.
His Eminence Metropolitan Joseph has blessed the posting of the liturgical texts that follow for the weekend of his Enthronement, set for December 5-7, 2014 at the Archdiocesan Cathedral of St. Nicholas in Brooklyn, New York.
All of the visiting clergy, laity and guests - as well as people watching on television or online - can print or download to their electronic devices these texts so that they can more easily follow the divine services. They also include "patriarchal elements," that is, portions of the services reserved for His Beatitude Patriarch John X of Antioch and All the East, or for his designees. His Beatitude will either preside over or celebrate all divine services.
On December 5-6, the Cathedral celebrates its patron saint, Nicholas the Wonderworker, Archbishop of Myra in Lycia on the anniversary of his passing into eternal life on December 6, 343. On December 7, His Beatitude will celebrate the Patriarchal Divine Liturgy with Sayidna Joseph and approximately 35 Orthodox Christian bishops, many from the Patriarchate of Antioch.
The Liturgical Texts for the month of December, blessed by His Eminence Metropolitan Joseph, are now ready for clergy and laity to download from the Online Liturgical Guide.
This month, Orthodox Christians find themselves in the midst of the forty-day Fast in preparation of the celebration of the Nativity of our Lord, God and Savior Jesus Christ. Fr. Alexander Schmemann of blessed memory called this time of year the "Winter Pascha" because, as Fr. Thomas Hopko puts it, "He was worshipped by wise men that the whole of creation might adore Him in His triumph over death."
In anticipation of many parishes offering divine services on Thanksgiving Day, November 27, the Online Liturgical Guide now features Daily Vespers and Divine Liturgy Variables for the American holiday.